Barcelona transfer news: Frenkie de Jong shirt number hint as Man Utd and Chelsea battle | Soccer | sport
A clue has emerged suggesting that Frenkie de Jong may still have a future at Barcelona. The Dutch international is attracting interest from Manchester United and Chelsea as the summer transfer window approaches. However, his priority remains staying at Camp Nou – having been at the club since joining from Ajax in 2019.
Manchester United have been De Jong’s favorites for most of the summer, with Erik ten Hag determined to secure a reunion with his former Ajax midfielder.
But Chelsea have also emerged as potential suitors for the 25-year-old as he seeks to close the gap with Manchester City and Liverpool.
There is, however, still the possibility that De Jong will stay at Barcelona.
The La Liga website shows there has been some movement over shirt numbers amid all the uncertainty as the start of the new Spanish football season draws closer.
Robert Lewandowski was given the No.9 shirt previously worn by Memphis Depay which was deemed surplus to requirements.
Depay, who has also been linked with a move to the Premier League this summer, has apparently yet to receive any new numbers at Camp Nou.
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Likewise Miralem Pjanic, despite some suggestions, the Bosnian international could be given another chance after impressing Xavi in pre-season.
The website also reveals that Oscar Mingueza and Samuel Umtiti, both players in the market, are also without numbers at present.
While De Jong’s number is still next to his name added a new twist to this ongoing saga.
United remain confident they will be able to land the Netherlands international this summer, having been emboldened by Ten Hag’s good relationship with the player.
But Chelsea believe their ability to offer De Jong the chance to play in the Champions League could tip the transfer pendulum.
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And the end of the saga is something only time will tell.
Meanwhile, speaking recently, former Tottenham star Jamie O’Hara called United’s pursuit of De Jong “embarrassing” and urged them to move on to alternatives.
Declan Rice, Jude Bellingham, Ruden Neves and Youri Tielemans have all been linked in case their pursuit of their primary goal fails.
And O’Hara told Sky Sports News: “Move on, move on. It was a joke. It’s almost embarrassing now that they’re still trying to sue him.
“If it hasn’t happened now, it won’t. This is Manchester United we’re talking about, one of the biggest clubs in the world.
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“I know they don’t have the most attraction anymore because of the way the club has gone.
“But if the player always turns around saying ‘I don’t want to leave, I want to stay at Barcelona’, they’re having fun trying to sort out the wages owed to him, just walk away from him.
“There are a lot of other top players you can sign and you don’t want a player to end up coming to the football club almost against his will, in a way. That doesn’t sit well with me.”
And he added: “If Manchester United phoned me when I was in my prime, and a lot of players would say the same thing, you’re on the plane, the next day ‘I’m going to Manchester United “.
“Now if a player says ‘no, I don’t want to go’, then okay, see you later, we’ll take someone else.”
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